• Broadway Beat

We've Been Heard! Derek Klena to Replace Hugh Jackman in "The Music Man" Because Age Was the Problem

by Emily Elizabeth Jones. @EJonesy__.

NEW YORK, NY - After receiving criticism that their upcoming The Music Man revival featuring a cast of primarily older white actors, Scott Rudin and his team have announced that they have recast the role of Harold Hill with Derek Klena to “honor and promote diversity on stage” in the form of a much younger lead actor, sources confirmed.

“The theatre community has had enough of old white men running this town, which is why we made the selfless decision to drop the only person garnering ticket sales and replace him with a much younger white man,” stated producer Scott Rudin (62). “It’s 2021 for god’s sake. It's time for the people we see onstage to reflect the world we live in: not just full of older white people with money, but full of young white people who may or may not have money, too.”

According to several sources, this casting announcement has elicited relieved emotions, giving ticket holders something to complain about during the Broadway shutdown.

“Personally, I felt the casting decision was long overdue,” remarked @galindawithaga333, an enthusiastic fan from the BroadwayWorld.com forum. “Many of us in the Broadway community demanded representation in the industry, and I’m just glad the higher ups listened to us and actually changed things up - but you know, not too much.”

Derek Klena (29), who has successfully played a high school student for the last 15 years, will be “Shipoopi-ing” into the Winter Garden come December. Others involved in the production are equally excited by the big societal leap.

“I believe it was Ghandi who said ‘be the change you wish to see in the world,’” explained casting director Bernie Telsey (62). “Well, we wish to see old white men take a back seat and allow for some young but still white men to get in the game.”


In an effort to raise ticket sales, Sutton Foster, who was previously cast in the role of Marian Paroo, will be replaced by The Prom’s breakout star, Meryl Streep (71).